Malaysia: Peaceful, Diverse, and Reliable
Known to ancient mariners as “The land between the winds,” the Malay Peninsula extends 460 miles from the tip of continental Asia, reaching from Thailand to Indonesia.
Peninsular (West) Malaysia, and Malaysian Borneo (East Malaysia) share a land area slightly larger than New Mexico.
The Golden Age of the Malayan Peninsula occurred in the 15th century, when the Empire of Melaka (Malacca) assumed great power and influence as the crossroad of trade between India, China, and the Middle East.
In 1511 Portugese forces seized Melaka, starting a period of European influence in Southeast Asia that would last more than 400 years until the end of British occupation. Modern Malaysia, formed in 1957, remains a member of the British Commonwealth.
Now a federation of 13 states, the nation retains its rich mixture of cultures and traditions. Malaysia’s 22 million citizens are 58% Malay and other indigenous peoples, 24% Chinese, 8% Indian, and 10% other cultures.
Since the early 1970s, Malaysia has transformed itself from a producer of raw materials to an emerging multi-sector economy. Peace, prosperity, and careful planning have characterized its growth and development as a reliable, responsible business partner. Prestigious companies like Dell Computers, Intel, National Semiconductor, Motorola and Seagate have found Malaysia a reliable and friendly nation in which to maintain major business operations.
Malaysia is a beneficial trading partner of the U.S. In 2015, the U.S. market represented 9.4% of Malaysia’s exports ( $19.1 billion). In the same year, Malaysia imported $14.4 billion worth of U.S. goods.
With its modern transportation, communication, financial and energy infrastructures, Malaysia is positioned for the future.
Did You Know?
In July 1997, a widespread currency crisis plunged Southeast Asia into deep recession. Malaysia recovered quickly — and independently — recording 5.4% economic growth in 1999, without accepting a bailout from the IMF.